World Superbike Championship leader Max Biaggi leads the way after the first free practice session at Motorland Aragon this morning.

The factory Aprilia rider moved to the top of the time sheets early in the session and was never displaced as he posted the best lap in a time of 1m 58.837s to set the benchmark in FP1 by 0.187s from Kawasaki's Tom Sykes, who overhauled Eugene Laverty for second with his final lap.

Northern Irishman Laverty was 0.3s behind team-mate Biaggi's time as he attempts to bounce back this weekend on the RSV4 after a series of disappointing results.

Chaz Davies made it three Aprilias in the top four as a late flourish lifted him up the leaderboard ahead of BMW's Marco Melandri and Ayrton Badovini on the Goldbet Italia S1000RR.

Ulsterman Jonathan Rea, currently second in the championship table behind Biaggi, was 15th on his Honda Racing Fireblade, 2.55 seconds off the pace.

However, Rea is making his debut at Aragon after missing last year's inaugural race as a result of a wrist injury he sustained at Misano, which curtailed his chances of challenging for the title and will expect to make up ground as the weekend progresses.

Italian star Biaggi, who leads the championship by 38.5 points, seemed particularly strong in the final sector at Aragon, where he appears to have an advantage of a few tenths of a second over his rivals.

Reigning champion Carlos Checa ended up 10th fastest on the Althea Ducati, 1.2s behind Biaggi, while Brits Leon Camier and Leon Haslam were seventh and eighth respectively.

Checa is losing out on top speed at Aragon, where his Ducati is around 10mph down on the fastest straight-line speed of the Aprilia and BMW machines, with Laverty and Melandri through the timing beam at 201mph.